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U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement Signed

Friday, November 30, 2018

(North American Meat Institute)

President Donald Trump, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto on Friday signed the new U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) at the G-20 Summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The agreement, which modernizes the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), maintains duty-free market access for most agricultural products. Specifically, Canada will provide new access for U.S. chicken and increase its access for U.S. turkey exports. Meanwhile, tariffs on agricultural products traded between the U.S. and Mexico will remain at zero, though tariffs in place currently in response to the Administration’s steel and aluminum tariffs on imports from Canada and Mexico remain in place for now.

In a statement , the Meat Institute applauded the agreement as a positive step in preserving duty-free access to two of the U.S. meat and poultry industry’s most critical foreign markets, but also encouraged the three countries to work toward a resolution to tariffs currently hindering U.S. meat exports.

The Meat Institute’s statement read, in part, “Although the agreement signed today safeguards the core tenets of NAFTA that have strengthened the U.S. meat sector and overall economy, those benefits will not be fully realized until the three countries work to remove tariffs currently in place. The Meat Institute continues to encourage the Administration to lift steel and aluminum tariffs on imports from Canada and Mexico, and urges Canada and Mexico to, in turn, remove retaliatory tariffs on U.S. meat exports.”

The U.S. International Trade Commission will now study the pact and issue a report on the effects of the USMCA on the economy, including its impact on different sectors and on U.S. consumers. This report is due 105 days after the official signing. It is unlikely Congress will consider the USMCA until that analysis is complete. For a timeline of the USMCA approval process, click here .

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